The Mount Haemus Lectures: Volume One by Ronald Hutton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
“Thanks to the generosity of the Order’s patroness, Dwina Murphy-Gibb, who helped to establish the award in its first decade, the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids grants a scholarship each year for original research in Druidism and related subjects. We have called this scholarship the Mount Haemus Award, after the apocryphal Druid grove of Mt Haemus that was said to have been established near Oxford in 1245. Each research paper is published online here, and is also delivered as a lecture at a Mount Haemus Award day held every four years. In addition, every eight years, the papers are gathered together and published in a book.” (http://www.druidry.org/events-projects/mount-haemus-award)
Thus reads the description for this particular volume of essays and research papers. Much of the work presented comes off very dry and academic in its nature – which is partly what this is about: academic-level research. For me, there were three papers that were not only outstanding in content, but left me wanting to read even more. Gordon Cooper’s “Druidry: Exported Possibilities and Manifestations”, Caitlin Matthews’ “Question, Answer and the Transmission of Wisdom in Celtic and Druidic Tradition”, and Dr. James Maertens’ “Entering Faerie: Elves, Ancestors & Imagination”. These three papers not only provided information for me on topics of interest, but also helped formulate even deeper questions that I have begun to explore in my own meditations and journal entries. While I did not find the other papers to be nearly as engaging or hold my interest as close – others may find those papers to provide deeper thought for them.